Hazelden, Betty Ford Clinic discuss collaboration

Two of the country’s leading addiction treatment centers are talking about an alliance.

Representatives from the Hazelden Foundation in Minnesota and the Betty Ford Clinic in California say the talks are expected to continue for weeks. Officials declined to say whether the talks could eventually lead to a merger.

The catalyst for discussions is the federal health care law and the additional 40 million Americans who are expected to receive treatment when it’s fully implemented. Hazelden board chairwoman Susan Gillis says “the challenge will be to pay for that expanded coverage and service.” She says only the strong will survive and thrive. The Star Tribune says Gillis believes the two centers would be even stronger if they collaborated.

Hazelden is based in Center City. The Betty Ford Clinic is in Rancho Mirage, Calif.